The very wealthy Nopporn Suppipat was accused of lese majeste after he was named in a family-based purge of persons associated with then Crown Prince Vajiralongkorn’s estranged wife Srirasmi and her relatives in early December 2014.
The Bangkok Military Court issued an arrest warrant for Nopporn on 2 December 2014 allegedly he hiried two criminal suspects connected to former Central Investigation Bureau chief Pongpat Chayapan, the then princess’s uncle. Nopporn is accused of defaming the monarchy by using royal influence to hire others to physically assault and threaten.
Forbes lists Nopporn as a rich lister, worth US$800 million. His rise has been startling after several unsuccessful enterprises in the past. He is boss of Wind Energy Holding Co.
Nopporn fled the country and declared his innocence.
He apparently fled to Cambodia on 30 November 2014 after he found that he would be charged under the lese majeste law. He says: “I knew ‘112’ would mean I wouldn’t get bail… I couldn’t take that risk…”.
Nopporn denied any connection to the princess’s relatives. He says he was engaged in a lengthy court dispute over money with the businessman, eventually enlisting the help of a senior army officer to help negotiate a final settlement. Nopporn said the officer hired Srirasmi’s brothers, without his knowledge.
The tycoon also explained that he believed he was being targeted because he was perceived as being close to former premier Thaksin Shinawatra, which he denies. He says the “police believed I was close to Thaksin, and with that I knew I had to run…”.
Nopporn said he has no intention of returning to Thailand any time soon because he would be unable to get a fair hearing in the junta-strangled nation. He denies all of the charges.
All of this is background for a story in the Business Insider on Nopporn’s exile in France. He has now lived in Paris for two years “as a political refugee, and has dabbled in France’s burgeoning tech scene. He is the lead investor in Blade, a Paris-based cloud computing firm which has just raised €51 million (£45 million)…”.
He said he doesn’t plan to return to Thailand and has sold his company there:
Suppipat, for legal reasons, can’t comment on where his money is. Having fled Thailand, he was forced to sell WEH in 2016 in what he describes as a bad deal to another prominent Thai businessman, Nop Narongdej. “He shafted me….
No one is safe in Thailand under the military-monarchy gang.